Defense Date

2010

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Master of Science

Department

Medicinal Chemistry

First Advisor

Martin Safo

Abstract

Deficiency of vitamin B6 due to mutations in key B6 metabolizing enzymes is suspected to contribute to several pathologies. Vitamin B6 in its active form, pyridoxal 5’-phosphate (PLP) is a cofactor for over 140 known B6 requiring (or PLP-dependent) enzymes, that serve vital roles in many biochemical reactions. There are three primary vitamin B6 forms, pyridoxine (PN), pyridoxamine (PM) and pyridoxal (PL) which are phosphorylated to pyridoxine 5’-phosphate (PNP), pyridoxamine 5’-phosphate (PMP) and PLP respectively. Pyridoxal kinase (PLK) and pyridoxine 5’-phosphate oxidase (PNPO) are the key enzymes involved in both salvage and de novo pathways of PLP biosynthesis. Mutations in these enzymes are one of the most important causes of PLP deficiency, apart from dietary insufficiency of vitamin B6 and drug inhibition of PLK and PNPO. One of our objectives is to understand the molecular basis of reduced catalytic activity of PNPO in case of the R95C homozygous missense natural mutant, which leads to the PLP deficiency and the debilitating disease, neonatal epilepsy encephalopathy. Using site-directed mutagenesis, circular dichroism, enzyme kinetics and fluorescence spectroscopy, we have shown that the reduced enzymatic activity exhibited by PNPO R95C mutant is due to reduced binding affinity of the oxidase cofactor, flavin mononucleotide (FMN), which is required by the enzyme for oxidizing the inactive B6 vitamers into the active PLP. High concentrations of B6 are linked to neurotoxic effects, which can be attributed to the highly reactive aldehyde group of PLP which reacts with many nucleophiles in the cell. This reactivity is most likely why the in vivo concentration of “free” PLP is about 1 μM, raising the intriguing question of how the cell supplies sufficient PLP to meet the requirements of the numerous B6 dependent enzymes. Our second objective is to determine how despite the low in vivo concentration of free PLP, enough of this co-factor is made available to activate PLP-dependent enzymes. We have used affinity pull down assays, fluorescence polarization and enzyme kinetics to show that PNPO forms specific interactions with B6 enzymes with dissociation constants less than 1 µM. We also show that transfer of PLP from PNPO possibly occurs by compartimentalization or channeling. Although, channeling is a controversial subject, it offers an efficient, exclusive, and protected means of delivery of the highly reactive PLP. High concentrations of B6 are linked to neurotoxic effects, which can be attributed to the highly reactive aldehyde group of PLP which reacts with many nucleophiles in the cell. This reactivity is most likely why the in vivo concentration of “free” PLP is about 1 ?M, raising the intriguing question of how the cell supplies sufficient PLP to meet the requirements of the numerous B6 dependent enzymes. Our second objective is to determine how despite the low in vivo concentration of free PLP, enough of this co-factor is made available to activate PLP-dependent enzymes. We have used affinity pull down assays, fluorescence polarization and enzyme kinetics to show that PNPO forms specific interactions with B6 enzymes with dissociation constants less than 1 µM. We also show that transfer of PLP from PNPO possibly occurs by compartimentalization or channeling. Although, channeling is a controversial subject, it offers an efficient, exclusive, and protected means of delivery of the highly reactive PLP.

Rights

© The Author

Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission

August 2010

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